JUDO: Jemima relishing her packed schedule
JEMIMA Duxberry says she’s ready to meet the challenges being thrown her way as her judo life gets busier than ever.
The 18-year-old, from Devizes, is in her first year training full-time at the University of Bath and her ambitions were handed a boost on Tuesday evening as she was one of five county athletes earmarked as a ‘future Olympian’ by Wiltshire Council and presented with a £1,000 grant.
Duxberry, who won her first ever major senior medal with U63kg silver at January’s British Championships, is chasing qualification for this year’s European Junior Championships (in Bosnia-Herzegovina in September) and says that she does not mind her diary being choc-full of junior and senior events.
“I think it is going to be busier season with the full-time training and our coach wants everyone to do all of the training camps – he wants to start integrating me into the senior programme as well,” said Duxberry, who is in action in the English Open in Sheffield on Sunday.
“I’ll be doing a lot of junior European Cups and a few senior ones so being on both teams will be tough but I don’t mind a challenge.
“I like to be pushed and have stuff there. I sit there on a weekend off and just think ‘this is so boring’.
“It’s a lot different to travelling somewhere to compete – I’ve got four successive weekends in a row at one point this year and I’m not really looking forward to it.”
Duxberry also received a council grant in 2011 and says that her funding boost can make a big difference.
“This year I’m hoping to use it to either go to Japan for a training camp or as funds to get me to other European and World Cups,” she said.
“Out of all the athletes, they could have chosen anyone so I’m really lucky to be chosen again.
“If GB select you, then they do pay for everything – I’m going to Portugal in a few weeks’ time – but you want to have that extra step on everyone else and go to extra ones to get more points.
“If I’m in the top ten in Europe, I have automatic qualification for the European Championships and that’s what I’m looking for.
“It helps with travelling as well because I’ve got to pay for the bus from Devizes to Bath every day.
“I share a car with my older sister but she gets the priority – the worker gets it over the athlete.”